53 Etz HaChaim St.
Eli Dudu Basher
The shuk has many stories, and Basher Fromagerie is a Cinderella tale. Two previous generations of Eli Basher’s family ran a small restaurant in Machne Yehuda, but he struck out on a different path. On a trip to France, he fell in love with the European cheese culture. Although raised with (and on the funds from) traditional Yerushalmi cooking, he nevertheless decided to import a taste of Paris into the heart of shuk.
Basher Fromagerie is now well-known beyond the confines of the shuk and ranks among the best-quality cheese outlets in the country. Eli travels to Rungis, an enormous wholesale market in the suburbs of Paris, every month to keep his empire stocked with hundreds of varieties of cheese from Europe. Israeli dairies are also represented in the store. In addition to cheese, the store offers a variety of wines, imported beers, dips and spreads, Italian pastas, special kinds of bread and other high-quality delicacies. Basher Fromagerie also provides cheeses to several high-end Jerusalem restaurants.
Beyond Machne Yehuda, Eli Basher has opened a store in Tel Aviv and plans to bring top-quality cheeses to as many people as he possibly can.
To me, the shuk is:
Every painter has his palette, and every self-respecting cook has his market.